West Cork Literary Festival
The West Cork Literary Festival in Bantry is one of Ireland’s foremost literary events. Famous international and Irish writers, as well as established and emerging writers, gather in Bantry every year. There are master classes in various genre, readings and workshops, as well as interviews with authors, book launches and a myriad of other events.
Ellen Hutchins Festival
August 2022 (TBA)
The Ellen Hutchins Festival will take place around Bantry, West Cork as part of National Heritage Week, with its theme of Sharing Stories. It will offer walks and talks, an exhibition, and practical workshops featuring botany, botanical art and an exploration of the natural and cultural heritage of the area.
Almost all events are free.
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The Masters of Tradition is where Bantry showcases the best of Irish and International traditional music and this music festival is an unmissable event if you have any interest in Irish music.
There are workshops and classes for traditional musicians and singers with all instruments and standards catered for. Concerts are performed by well known musicians and speakers share their knowledge of Irish music, but the reason people flock to this West Cork Music Festival is for the extraordinary quality of the impromptu sessions that continue non-stop, day and night on the streets and in the pubs.
Chief O’Neill Festival
As the famous ‘Chief’ of the Chicago police force, Chief O’Neil won fame and affection in America, but he never lost his love for the Irish music he had learned as a child growing up in Tralibane near Bantry in West Cork. Noticing that Chicago, with its large Irish population, was home to brilliant musicians from across Ireland, Chief O’Neil set about building a unique collection of the tunes they played: a songbook for the musicians of the future. Chief O’Neil not only collected traditional tunes from Irish musicians in Chicago, he also published them in an impressive series of books which are still in print today. In the process, O’Neil helped to safeguard the future of traditional Irish music on both sides of the Atlantic.
Each year, the best contemporary musicians gather in Bantry to celebrate the musical legacy of Chief O’Neil, with a traditional music festival to highlight his achievements as a collector of traditional Irish music. You will find a packed programme of concerts, workshops and sessions at this lively event